The Obesity Epidemic

It’s true. We are in the midst of an obesity epidemic, which, despite the information and help available, is growing at an alarming rate. The mountain of information available on weight loss and healthy eating doesn’t seem to be having any impact on this escalating trend

Dr Jaap Seidell of the International Obesity Task force, has confirmed that the incidence of obesity is on the rise throughout the world making it one of the fastest developing public health concerns. The World Health organization has described it as a “world wide” epidemic. It’s estimated that around 250 million people worldwide are obese. This is particularly prevalent in the US where over one third of the adult population are obese and one in seven children and adolescents are obese.

Many people have become yo yo dieters. They lose weight only to put it back on again time after time, they can even put more weight on than before. Their weight is gradually creeping up higher and higher and they don’t know what to do about it.

Sadly weight loss yoyo-ers are on the increase. Basically your body has become confused. Originally your body had a set point, a weight that was the norm for you. With repeated weight loss followed by weight gain your body is constantly changing that set point until it is at a higher rate than you would like it to be. It can then be very difficult to attain the weight loss you so desire. Your body plateaus and any further weight loss seems like an impossibility. This is often the time when the dieter becomes frustrated and gives up

If you want to re regulate your set point it is important to realize that you are going to have to be far more persistent in your approach to weight loss. Sustaining your weight loss, can become increasingly difficult mainly because your adrenal glands have become exhausted. Very often when you have been on a weight loss diet month after month, perhaps not following the most sensible diet, maybe cutting calories or missing meals your body is constantly in a fight or flight state. This will inevitably leave you tired. People will often turn to stimulants such as tea, coffee, and diet drinks as a pick me up to compensate for their energy deficient diet. Unfortunately this just activates the sympathetic nervous system to release more stress hormones which in turn requires more stimulants and so the cycle goes on and weight loss becomes less and less likely. It becomes a self defeating prophecy and more often than not the dieter is completely unaware of the effect their eating/drinking habits are having on their weight loss regime

Anyone who has been on a poorly regulated weight loss diet will inevitably have lost some muscle as well as fat. As muscle burns energy this can be detrimental to your weight loss regime. Decreased muscle mass means a lower metabolic rate. This in turn means less fat burning will take place. As you can see it can so easily turn into a vicious circle and the yo yo dieter strikes again!

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